Skip to main content

Full text of "Digital Booklet - Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness.pdf (PDFy mirror)"

See other formats


Beauty, Sadness 
6 the Best of Times 



It was the best of times that came before 
the worst of times. 
Considering all of the tension 
preceding it — and all of the tragedy 
and turmoil that would follow — Mellon 
Collie and the Infinite Sadness was, perhaps 
surprisingly, a memorably happy and 
successful recording experience for The 
Smashing Pumpkins. "This was the best 
time in the band by far," Corgan says 
today of the Mellon Collie sessions with a 
mixture of pride and sadness in his voice. 
"I think that's one of the great tragedies 
in our story, that when we finally did find 
the right balance internally we enjoyed 
our greater success. What's sad about 
that is we were never able to recapture 
that again." 

On numerous levels both literal and 
figurative, the double CD Mellon Collie 
and the Infinite Sadness was a very big 
success. "At the time, I went around saying 
I was inspired by Pink Floyd's The Wall to 



try to create that kind of big, ambitious 
thing. And, of course, jerks in the media 
still take me to task for saying that. For 
the record, from my point of view, I wasn't 
trying to say that I had written my Wall. 
Obviously our album didn't have that 
same kind of narrative. What I meant was 
that we were trying to reach for something 
expansive like Pink Floyd achieved with 
The Wall — as opposed to making a double 
album like The White Album by the Beatles 
— which was basically a wider collection 
of great songs by a group. Yes, those are 
crazy groups to ever compare yourself to 
but as they say, you have to aim high. So 
I looked towards something like The Wall 
as a kind of goal. Clearly, The Wall is the 
superior album by far but looking now, I 
feel like we did pretty good." 

When it comes to Mellon Collie and the 
Infinite Sadness, "good" is a rather large 
understatement. Few double servings in 
rock history have ever gone down quite 




so well. "Making a double album was my 
idea and I was dead set on it," Corgan 
recalls. "Virgin tried to talk me out of it, 
but when they realized that I couldn't be 
swayed, they tried to convince us to take 
the Guns N' Roses' strategy and release it 
as two different CD's. I refused and dug 
my heels in, and eventually, they agreed. 
Of course I was thinking of classic double 
albums like The Wall or The White Album, 
but it was only years later I counted the 
number of songs and realized that we'd 
basically made a double CD which was 
actually more like making a triple album. 
It would fit on two CDs, but it was three 
albums of vinyl. So it ended up being 
something even more demanding than a 
double album, and even more ridiculous." 
As nervy an undertaking as it may have 
been, the record shows that Mellon Collie 
and the Infinite Sadness — nicely divided 
onto two CDs, "Dawn To Dusk" and then 
"Twilight to Starlight" — now seems far 
more sublime than ridiculous. 

This also marked a significant fork in 
the Pumpkins' road. 

"What strikes me now about Mellon 
Collie is that we were coming off of 
making Siamese Dream with Butch Vig 
— which was a very idealized statement," 



Corgan says. "Siamese Dream was very suc- 
cessful and very much at the forefront of 
how records are made now with a strong 
perfectionist streak. Yet, coming off of that 
success, we went completely in the op- 
posite direction working with Flood and 
Alan Moulder. We headed into a much 
darker, funkier and more visceral terrain. 
Revisiting Mellon Collie for this edition, 
that's what struck me — that we made 
this kind of dramatic "about face" at a time 
when most people would have made an 
even more expensive idealized statement. 
We went deep and we went for something 
expansive sounding — not just expensive 
sounding." 

The decision to work with the respected 
British producer and audio engineer Flood, 
aka Mark Ellis, and his longtime collabo- 
rator Alan Moulder, was a significant one 
for The Pumpkins. The group had admired 
Flood's work with artists from U2 to Nine 
Inch Nails and Depeche Mode. "I loved 
Butch Vig very much then, and I still do," 
Corgan explains. "The decision to switch 
things up was based on the sense that there 
was some whole other thing that could 
be gotten to by us, but that a more radical 
approach was going to be necessary to get 
to it. We knew we wanted to continue our 





. • " - 

• iijh;!!! 1 r ^ 

: :: ::: :-^IHk :: - :: 

7/ ^"^SLfssCPSs ~ 




evolving consciousness, but we were not 
quite sure how to do it." 

That hunch proved to be a good one. 

"Flood's great skill — beyond being 
incredibly sonically gifted — is that he 
seems to speak the language of the song- 
writer," says Corgan. "He articulates back 
to the songwriter what the songwriter is 
trying to do. In many ways, he sees more 
potential in your songs than you do. A 
perfect example of that on Mellon Collie is 
the song "By Starlight." There's a version 
of us in rehearsal with these sorts of Nick 
Mason-like slow fills and strings that 
sounded like something off a Dan Fogel- 
berg album. Flood fucking HATED it. He 
said, 'What's with all the Seventies crap? 
This is a much darker song. Let me show 
you what you mean.' So then we ended up 
cutting this very stark track that worked 
much better." 

Working first in a rehearsal space, 
then recording overdubs at the Chicago 
Recording Company, before finishing up 
at The Village Recorder in Los Angeles, 
Flood and Moulder helped create a 
dramatically different creative atmosphere 
for The Smashing Pumpkins. Flood and 
Moulder wanted a sound that was truer to 
the band's live dynamic and at the same 



time an experience that was more inclusive 
for the other three members: James Iha, 
D'arcy and Jimmy Chamberlin. As Corgan 
recalls, "What Flood did really brilliantly, 
along with Alan, was that he addressed the 
real disappointment James and D'arcy felt 
over not playing on Siamese Dream. Flood 
really brought them into the process and 
said, 'Here's how you can participate and 
I will give you a really fair opportunity. 
But I'm also going to be the first person 
to let you know if you're not getting the 
job done.' And they went 'Great.' Flood 
definitely engaged James and D'arcy more 
at the demo and the arrangement stage, so 
even at the end of the day, if he stepped in 
and said, T think Billy should do this part,' 
they felt like they had more of a stake in 
how it all went down. Butch was all about 
getting the best recording. Flood made 
the process more inclusive. Both ways, the 
results were excellent." 

For Corgan, "Flood somehow gets in 
there and captures an essence and exploits 
it, without taking the edges of it. That's 
what is unique about him and may be why 
U2 was drawn to him. Alan Moulder is 
Flood's best friend and there's an interest- 
ing dynamic there. Flood's sort of the 
Alpha Dog, but then he'll defer to Alan. 



Alan is one of those people who doesn't 
say a lot but when he says something it 
carries a lot of weight. Alan brought a lot 
of sonic clarity to the album, and he would 
often be working with James and D'arcy 
while I was in the workshop with Flood 
cooking something up. That allowed me to 
have all the oxygen I needed too. And as 
usual, Jimmy was drumming brilliantly all 
over everything." 

Released on October 24, 1995, Mellon 
Collie and the Infinite Sadness would debut 
at #1 on the Billboard 200 chart and yield 
major hits like "Bullet With Butterfly 
Wings" - the band's unlikely first Top 40 
hit - and the exquisite "1979" and epic 
"Tonight, Tonight" as well as a thoroughly 
inspired series of videos. The album would 
also earn a Grammy as well as seven 
nominations. Of "Tonight, Tonight," 
Corgan says, "Of all the songs with The 
Smashing Pumpkins that one seems to 
have that level of just getting better with 
age. Every time we play it live it's one of 
the highlights of the night. And it's funny 
because in doing the reissues, listening 
to the demos, it reminds me what I was 
thinking at the time. I thought it was a 
pretty good song, but I didn't necessar- 
ily think it was exponentially better than 



anything else. That's just one of those 
songs that really connects with people — 
the chords, the message, everything. And 
somehow the song continues to hold that 
power." 

Corgan recalls that "1979" — the band's 
biggest hit single ever — was more of a 
struggle, albeit one with a happy ending. 
"We had the track and we all thought it 
was a good song, but every time we tried 
to play it as a band, it sounded like The 
Rolling Stones — and not in a good way," 
Corgan says with a laugh. "It came out 
too bluesy. We were running out of time 
and packing up for L.A. Finally, Flood 
said, 'What's going on with this song? 
Tomorrow is D-day, we either finish this 
song or it's off the record.' So I went 
home that night, finished all the lyrics, 
did a demo that sounds remarkably like 
the final record. I came in the next day 
with the demo, and Flood said, T love it. 
Now make it happen.' We went in the 
room and cut it in one day. There are all 
sorts of weird influences on that track: 
there's a little Can, obviously some Euro- 
pop, New Order, there's even something 
Sonic Youth-y in the riff. And Flood 
added that percolating Tangerine Dream 
thing in the back too. There's all sorts 



of weird little pieces of influence that 
somehow come together and create one 
of those beautiful synchronicities where 
everything lined up perfectly." 

Beyond the more obvious hits, though, 
Mellon Collie is a song cycle of unusual 
depth and considerable range. Asked for 
his personal favorites on the album, Corgan 
says, "The songs that I would point to 
beyond the obvious A-pile are ones like "To 
Forgive," "Cupid De Locke," "Bodies" and 
"Thru The Eyes of Ruby" — which because 



of the way we worked was in many ways the 
last great epic Pumpkins song. In a way, I 
hear that song now as the end of an era." 

As fate would have it, Mellon Collie and 
the Infinite Sadness would itself mark the 
end of an era for The Smashing Pumpkins. 
Yet there can be little doubt this was also 
a stunningly beautiful moment when 
everything lined up — a moment in time 
that's still here to be treasured. 

— David Wild, August 2012 



Dawn to Dusk 



Mellon Collie And The 
Infinite Sadness 

This ever-curious name came about years 
before its necessity, hatched as it were as I 
walked about the rusted grounds of Coney 
Island; on what was a bracing spring day 
circa 1991. Once received and noted within 
I auto -hypnotically blurted the title out 
into the air, hoping that by sharing it I'd 
better recall its odd canter later on. In 1994 
I brought home a new found relic: a 1920s 
piano that sounded somewhat dull and sen- 
timental to my ears, having chosen in sound 
what I also overlooked in the flat harp's 
poorly mismatched legs. Far up in the front 
parlor of my fresh painted Lady Victorian 
I hacked away, believing that in doing so I 
was playing my part in a beautiful dream 
now come true. Newly married and sitting 
out my mornings within the sloping arc of a 
bay window, I reached out into a once grand 
boulevard; keeping time with the sway of 
dancing trees. This is how I taught myself 
how to play my original instrument of 
choice, by inventing small partitas. This little 
train was among the best that lit the way. 



Tonight, Tonight 

Designed from the get-go to be a Mod 
throwback, 'Tonite' started out in a far lower 
key; lacking then the cut time verses that 
became its most recognizable signpost. The 
tune lingered around on the edges of a whole 
host of ideas until by chance I heard an 
orchestral fire in the aching changes; which 
in response made me only want to lift the 
key from a tidy C proper to a more epic G 
major. It was suggested then that we hire a 
proper arranger to make quite clear the mir- 
rored song to lay on its twin, and that's how 
I came to spend 4 days of my life being told 
'the rules' for what classical types would and 
wouldn't play as written. The string session 
itself was a harrowing affair; 30 foreigners 
on our rock and roll turf stuffed into the 
longwise expanse of 2 studio chambers. One 
noble scruff pulled me aside and said 'Did 
you write this stuff? Reminds me of Mahler!' 
Lyrically there were a few nods to Cheap 
Trick and Yeats, but the message I scrawled 
out was mine alone; rare in its direct honesty. 

Jellybelly 

If memory serves the original riff dates 
backwards into 1992, where we'd spasmodi- 
cally play some concoction of this song if 




there was nothing else to jam on in a 3rd 
encore. To spice things up the machine gun 
bit was added to chop up the monotony on 
the back end of the blues. Once we flipped 
the script to bring the rat-tat-tat up front, 
this led to far more excitement. Sped up tre- 
mendously, a Teutonic maelstrom emerged, 
until there was a starship waiting without 
a single lyric or melody to accompany it 
into space. A nihilist manifesto thrown like 
a pink hand grenade into an alley, I just 
went rode shotgun with the images until it 
sketched out nicely the gray of my suburban 
years. Jellybelly' holds one of my all-time 
favorite lines: 'Living makes me sick, so sick 
I wish I'd die.' Prescient indeed! 

Zero 

For the first time in my life I had a room 
solely devoted to nothing but the creative 
act. Into Spartan emptiness I placed a few 
rudimentary pieces of recording equipment; 
sitting atop passed on handmade furniture 
nobody in my family wanted, the ancestral 
code conveniently painted on as black 
decades before me. The room had once been 
the victim of fire, and when it was hot out 
you could still smell the charred timbers. 
From there I trace two demos made 5 
minutes of one another; the first bearing 



the opening maw but with a different 
second riff that whilst choogalin, lacks the 
imbued menace of the first. I presented the 
completed architecture of the song to the 
band that following afternoon, which also 
happened to be my 27th birthday if one 
believes in myths and unicorns. I did not 
know then that I would become the song 
and the song would become a part of my 
assumed identity. Curiously, I also find in 
reflection a devastating first shot at one of 
my band mates in amongst the carefully 
sharpened lines, one early indication that I 
was souring to what I saw facetiously com- 
ing down the pike. The tossed off missive 
'God is empty just like me' brought the God 
fearing and Hell-loving out to hound me for 
a few years in various backstage parking lots, 
trying their best to convert me to a God and 
Savior I was already sold on. Most seemed 
disappointed that I didn't put up more of a 
tenacious fight, beyond my saying that one 
lyric does not make a man, nor show the 
depths of what he believes in his heart. 

Here Is No Why 

This title was appropriated from an article 
I'd read on an anniversary of the world's 
first nuclear attacks. A survivor, in survey- 
ing a legacy of near-total devastation, had 






remarked in broken English that 'Here is 
no why.' Looking at the twisted remnants 
of my own childhood memories, I felt a 
similar sense of loss amidst my confusion. 
To hide some of my sorrow I couched 
those thoughts into this glammed up tart 
that rings neither happy nor sad. In some 
respects this song doesn't really fit in well 
amongst the others; being too maudlin 
for its own good and too strident to take 
full advantage of its T-Rexian strut. But 
like its author 'The Death Rock Boy', its 
most glaring defects are part of its linger- 
ing charm. 

Bullet With Butterfly Wings 

The original rats in yer cage' chorus was 
born of the boredom sitting around at 
one of those overly dry BBC sessions, the 
thump riff that opens the song a funny 
remnant of the very first Siamese Dream 
recording session. There were always lots of 
Frankenstein parts laying about then that 
I'd mix and match back up together, back 
when my real job was trying not to forget 
any inspiration that might come in handy 
later. All the way through the 10 or so 
months of writing and making this album 
I thought this tune both powerful and 



stupid, and I could never really settle on 
one such opinion over the other. I would 
later be shocked when the record label 
announced this song to be their choice for 
first single. I had to be talked into letting it 
happen by one cigar chomping CEO who 
declared brazenly over my phone, 'Kid, 
it's a smash!' The song's true message has 
grown on me over the years, as I find it to 
be a withering attack on the lameness of 
fame. Who could have known then that 
the glory of fame would be an even more 
important and ever-present commodity 
in the 21st century than it was in the face 
of the last. 

To Forgive 

The charitable act of forgiveness is made 
scarce mention of, but that in itself really 
stands as a lie, as there is nothing and no 
one to be forgiven in the solemn halls of 
this song. It is more so a song of condem- 
nation, the greatest of which is reserved for 
hand that writes it, who despite knowing 
better will carry the same destructive 
patterns he has learned in youth into his 
own unnatural adult life. This is the kind 
of effort one only needs to make but once, 
and once is more than enough. 



Fuck You (An Ode To No One) 

In jostling about for attention in an era 
where the pit out front often dominated 
the focus of our evenings' music, heavy 
songs were a must to both keep and control 
the crowd in short bursts of regulated 
energy. The more we traveled the heavier 
we got, and the heavier we got the bigger 
the audience grew until it was a monster 
tipping over into those once safe places; 
where chaos wasn't something you just went 
into the city and did, only later to forget 
all about it in the safety of your room. Like 
the circus coming to town, we brought with 
us all the shadow elephants into the room; 
asking that they dance nice nightly for the 
amusement of all. Songs like this rode the 
razor's edge between nascent attraction 
and violence; where the blood off a split 
lip tastes good in your mouth. It took us 
forever to find and harness this kind of raw 
power, but once located and applied it had 
the effect of separating the shades of each 
night into different radical hues. 

Love 

A straight up blues where I moan and drone 
on about the confusing complexities of 
1-o-v-e wherever sex is applied as cause and 
effect. The word Tove' is used low here, for if 



in being lucky and used lowly enough love 
too becomes a useful device in the high arts 
of illumination. Straight up the song rocked, 
but by smearing the voice and cyber-afflxing 
the drums it takes on a mocking tone that 
distracts from the very real fear hidden in 
it. Vagina Dentata. Love as represented 
here is both oppressive and inescapable; an 
unrelenting God that won't let go until you 
are spent and hollowed o-u-t. 

Cupid De Locke 

To counter-balance our many dark excur- 
sions into the void, I sought some refuge by 
writing whimsically as well; finding solace 
in twirling parasols and the extant, lingering 
passions of the Belle Epoque. Love is held in 
the ideal, driven up high above a nasty world 
and held gloriously in places of unshakable 
faith. In a rare fit of fun we even recorded 
whisping aerosol cans and haughty, rusted 
scissor snips to build up an unusual kalei- 
doscope chorus around the semi-chromatic 
wheeze of the synth. Not a note is played 
by a human as it were, each part being fed 
through a phalanx of mystery boxes, which 
when twisted and turned just right spit back 
out a different set of warbles than the funny 
marbles you'd put in. In a humble nod to El- 
vis there is even a spoken poem of dedication 




that lilts out on the gallop, for I couldn't help 
myself but wrap fully in the cloak of a sincere 
and innocent lover. 



Galapogos 



I cannot recall what it was about Darwin's 
fabled set of islands that led me to associate 
my crumbling marriage to them. Perhaps 
I was wondering if in the lure of a total 
and disconnected isolation we might better 
survive the onslaught of life's ceaseless 
progress. Idealizing a failed romance can only 
get you so far, and once engaged I found that 
somewhere between my idealism and natural 
compassion for an identified other there 
lived a truth I was not yet willing to swallow 
about myself. Cue up my admitting here that 
one of us was about to be abandoned, never 
realizing that the desertion would flow both 
ways. 'Galapogos' stands up over time as a 
remnant of grace that I lost as I wrote it. 

Muzzle 

Written at first on the piano in my crude 
Lennon-ish tinker toy style, this song pos- 
sibly more than any other in the collection 
demonstrates the power of the old band 
collective to convert up ideas rapidly; from 
doleful sea shanties into epic rockets. It took 
me nearly a month to convince Jimmy to 



play with such joyful abandon on his fills, 
and I cited the great Big Star as an example 
where playing loose didn't necessarily mean 
playing poorly. This notion opened up a 
whole new gateway to Jimmy's drumming, 
where emotional expressionism took priority 
over his vaunted technical precision. Some- 
where in my mind I was thinking of Bobby 
D in repeating the core themes with varia- 
tion at the end, but it was a leftover memory 
of a clever song device from a source I could 
never recall. The idea of a muzzle refers to 
thinking my life would be far simpler if I just 
kept my trap shut. 

Porcelina Of The Vast Oceans 

On our first two albums we'd grown ac- 
customed to the benefit of playing many of 
the songs live long before they'd been crystal- 
lized on tape. Once stuck in the glut of so 
many ideas, I suggested we consider playing 
a few hometown shows to hammer out some 
kinks, as well as force the dubious pretenders 
among us out into the light. This made 
plenty of sense to everyone save for the fact 
that very few of the 50 plus songs we were 
working on at any given time had any true 
lyrics by which I might sing a show. Only 72 
hours before the first of 4 planned such dates 
I found myself with about 400 lines to fill 




and very little idea of what I might want to 
say if indeed I wanted to say anything at all! I 
raced my way through various spiraled note- 
books, compiling a sort of master syllabus of 
lines and fragmented poems that I'd jotted 
down along my travails. What came out in 
haste was a sort of running screed, where 
common ideas spilled over one another 
until I wasn't sure what any of the songs 
were really about. I ended keeping most of 
what I'd scrawled out in that moment of 
compression and pressure, and you can see 
that most clearly in a song like Torcelina, 
where vague allusions to mythic tides and 
sinking ships seemed only to enhance the 
unconscious feelings within. Carl Jung would 
be proud! As much as I want every line of 
every song to be perfect, there is something 
perfect about not fussing over anything too 
much; letting synchronicity be a teacher and 
guide to the stars. 

Take Me Down 

With 7 years in on the band, James had 
expressed interest in singing his own songs 
rather than to just contribute to ideas which 
I might develop into my own. There was 
real enthusiasm and support around him 
in the hopes he might chart his own path 
as a singer-songwriter; as long as what he 



brought to the band was strong. 'Take Me 
Down was a tune I personally felt worthy of 
inclusion from the start, but in the process 
of fleshing out its varying ideas the rest of 
us became moribund on a dreary isle. It 
is fair to say that there are many songs on 
Mellon Collie that are not band efforts per 
se, where in pursuing a particular feeling I 
wanted my singular ideas included as part 
of the work as a greater whole. In the end 
'Take Me Down became a different kind of 
solo effort, because James would not allow 
his song to be transmuted from its primary 
colors by the band; and we did work on it 
endlessly as a group, perhaps spending more 
time on this than any other in the studio. 
As such when we finished the album I 
sequenced it towards the end of record #1, 
because thematically it fit in nowhere I could 
find; although sonically its drowsiness had 
echoes elsewhere. James saw the demotion 
of his favored song to the back of the line 
as an unforgivable slight, killing his desire 
to contribute to the band as a writer of note 
from that moment on. 




Twilight to Starlight 



Where Boys Fear To Tread 

Out there on the highways, lurking in the re- 
cesses of those murky underpasses, are those 
boys who know that life as it is presented to 
most, is a scam; a work; a misguided waste. 
Not everyone grabs a gun and allays their 
phallic fears out at the expense of others. 
Most just brood and wait for something, 
anything, to happen. I bought a new guitar 
made to look vintage, in the idle hours wait- 
ing for the Double Door shows, and this riff 
was the first dang thing I ever played on it. I 
showed up for rehearsal showing off my new 
axe, and taught the band the atonal figure. 
What you hear on this record is the band 
playing the song for the very first time. 

Bodies 

Once we moved from Pumpkinland to 
the sterile drawl of the Chicago Recording 
Company, we still had some tracks to cut. 
For 'Bodies' our producer Flood loaded in a 
full P.A. and cranked the subs so hard that in 
the sealed room we were nauseous with the 
pressure being thrown about. Naturally we 
became agitated and uncomfortable, which 



in turn meant our work with one another 
became terse. Someone in your ears says with 
a tongue that sounds sarcastic in your de- 
lirium, rolling', and you're off; galloping like 
Norse prophets on a single noted mission. 
At this point in my life there were bodies 
everywhere, and it would have titillated me 
then to know there were many more to come. 
To sing the song the full-range speakers were 
lit on fire in the control room; loud enough 
to make my ears ring. Garble razor blades 
and scream-scream until it makes sense. I 
wondered then how I'd ever be able to sing 
the song in front of a room full of strangers. 

Thirty-Three 

Before it all falls apart there is a moment 
where you feel alright with not know- 
ing where you will land; knowing that by 
standing at a crossroads you invite whatever 
just conclusion may come, be it failure or 
success. I'd take these walks through my old 
neighborhood, my collar pulled up not just 
to brace away the cold but so that I could 
save myself the embarrassment of being 
recognized near where I lived. I longed for 
a privacy I'd gladly given away in my rush 
towards Olympus, and my home, painted a 
camouflaged shade of purple, had become a 
target for late-night teens feeling the need 




to drunkenly scream my name as I slept. I 
was fine with the idea of never-growing up, 
but death seemed unavoidable; the death of 
youth, the death of innocence. 

In The Arms Of Sleep 

Unhappy in love meant long nights on the 
town, undertaken without my bride in tow. I 
was spared the need to make up excuses why 
I didn't want her along because she worked 
a normal job. Vanity and attention called me 
to many a mirror, but this was not because I 
wanted to see myself in the gaze of another. 
I was looking for something while the rest 
of the world slept, and the zombies and 
parasites that roam the midnight world do 
have some answers in their pockets if you can 
get past their well-worn stories. A beautiful 
little song that by keeping quaint says more 
about disunion and disloyalty could than any 
symphony of noise could point to. 

1979 

The last song recorded, on the very last day 
of recording. We'd banged it about in various 
guises, the worst of which sounded like 
ill-formed stones rolling down a very steep 
hill. The groove as it were was not in our 
inherent system, and it was only in turning 
to the rigidity of Kraut-rock did we find the 



song screaming to get out. We all felt it to 
be a good song and an inspired feeling, but 
with little in our canon to compare it to I 
was lost on it until the thought of losing it 
off the record roused the fight in me. It whirs 
and bangs like a happy clock in a Metropolis 
factory, and somehow the lyric, which sings 
of an opposing sensuous world, balances all 
of my life on the head of a pin. We guessed it 
could be a single, but never thought it would 
follow 'Bullet' into the trenches. 

Tales Of A Scorched Earth 

A song loved and hated still; the one that 
goes farther than any other and in doing so 
provides the demarcation point of where 
our reach has overextended itself. To play it 
was sheer madness, and considering that 
the vocal was sung just twice over the mixed 
backing, in the final hour no less, shows that 
its presence here hung in the balance until 
the bitter end. We can find no trace of these 
2 vocal takes anywhere, and beyond my 
memory there is little left to explain what is 
ever there. If you listen carefully you can hear 
the howls of feedback between lines, and my 
struggling to sing out a song that would be 
near impossible even with a voice that is in 
fine touring shape. It survived the cut and 
the process simply because it signals the end. 




Thru The Eyes of Ruby 

The last of our long and overly constructed, 
epic songs; I even said as much at the time, 
thinking we'd never bother to do another. 
I approached 'Ruby' with real weariness, 
knowing the amount of work it would take 
and in my heart never being quite sold on 
the song. Looking back it has far more 
going for it as a composition than I gave it 
credit for at the time, and part of the way I 
approached the production of the guitars was 
almost to mock the mostly overblown style. 
Because my attention was elsewhere on other 
tunes, preparation of the guitar overdubs was 
handed off to my band mates, who spent 
a week coming up with very little between 
them. With our time running out I added 
something in the neighborhood of 54 guitar 
parts in 4 hours, if for nothing else than to 
show my frustration with them in spite. Not 
necessarily inspired ways of communication, 
but effective nonetheless. 

Stumbleine 

Recorded as a home demo in my empty 
room now dubbed badlands', 'Stumbleine' 
was a song passed off again and again with 
the notion we'd get around to recording it 
eventually. When the odious day came, I 
grew bored within minutes at the tedium of 



trying to track finger-picked guitar in my 
nerve-rattled state, and said wearily through 
the mic, 'Would you mind if we just use the 
demo instead.' Lab analysis was prepared, 
and my home machine brought in to see 
if indeed my one-take performance would 
hold up to the light of day. Surprisingly the 
performance as given was no worse than any 
of the other haphazard performances on the 
album, and so the demo passed into lore as 
the finished version. 

X.Y.U. 

Like many of our songs we had some of the 
arrangement together, while other bits would 
vary from moment to moment depending 
on whether or not we could remember what 
we were 'supposed to do', or what had been 
changed count-wise from the day before. The 
idea of recording this number in an official 
way seemed to be way too much work for 
all of us, so with a shrug it was suggested 
why not record it live, vocals and all, in the 
studio. No volume would be spared, and 
we'd just rattle on it until it was done. Each 
take we'd play a little faster and I'd change 
a phrase here and there until what we were 
looking for was within reach. Coming off 
a wicked cold I had trouble keeping my 
voice fresh, but the garble only added to 




my sense of desperation that we'd never get 
that 'definitive' take. Producer Alan Moulder 
would later say that recording this final take 
was the single most exciting moment he'd 
ever had in a studio, and there was a sense as 
it went down that something important was 
indeed happening, albeit with a far greater 
clarity than had been caught in any prior 
version. I remember thinking in my mind 
and psychically projecting out to the band, 
Tlease don't mess up!' Archeological evi- 
dence does however indicate that a portion 
of this version was stolen from an earlier take 
for reasons I cannot recall. The end result is 
haunting and singular, a lasting effect which 
could never have been captured through 
conventional means. 

We Only Come Out At Night 

In my thirst for musical altruism I bought a 
zither by mail order, which brought immedi- 
ate laughter from those in the gallows who 
said I'd never play it. I wrote this song that 
night to prove them wrong, a clever riposte 
to where we all thought ourselves so clever 
and dark and cool. Once you belong to the 
haunted there really is no true escape, but as 
long as you keep your wits about you you'll 
find you don't ever have to overpay the ferry- 
man to take you across. 



Beautiful 

I would be remiss to make a double album 
without at least a clumsy nod towards the 
greatest band ever, The Beatles, who inspired 
such excess in the first place. 'Beautiful' as 
it stood had an original version that was far 
darker than this one, which in hindsight 
would have added more than what ended 
up being wry and churlish. I do like the 
simplicity of the lyric, and can see now why 
Flood pushed me to strip away the artifice of 
psychedelia that I insisted on lathering it up 
with; revealing what would have ultimately 
been a more important tune; a case where 
the song gets lost in the production where 
others benefitted mightily in the reverse. 

Lily (My One And Only) 

The story is worn and true. I would climb a 
tree in my Father's front yard to get a better 
look into the room of the young woman who 
had so jilted me at 16. Perhaps she became 
wise to my view because she would draw her 
shades and I would have to resign myself to 
watching the shadows move in her room to 
see if there was perhaps another with her. 
Not all were in agreement with the lyric at 
the end that has the protagonist being led 
away in cuffs. I tried to explain to them as 
best I could that crime should never pay, and 



as such I'm still waiting to extract my revenge 
on the young woman who broke my heart 
so. One can only imagine that her looks have 
faded greatly with the years. 

By Starlight 

Unlike with 'Beautiful', here I was convinced 
to let the darkness of the song shine though, 
and because of that this version holds up 
well to a modern sensibility. Originally we 
had it more like a sentimental-era Electric 
Light Orchestra, but our fine producer 
would gnash his teeth each time Jimmy 
would lay into a staggeringly long lounge 
fill. We of course thought this high-larious, 
and only added in more annoying cliches to 
the song. Part of what happened here is that 
the final version was slowed down to add to 
the languor, and the drums were cleansed of 
almost all expression. A last moment change 
in arrangement sent us scrambling through 
old takes, upon which we found what we 
were looking for but in a different key. If you 
listen close enough there is a dissonance that 
rears its head halfway through; the ghost of 
that cut-in. 



Farewell And Goodnight 

Originally penned by James, I jumped 
on this idea as a way to end the album 
appropriately whilst giving a strong nod to 
Los Beatles for being our existential guide. I 
pushed that we all should sing on it, an idea 
Jimmy found appealing until he actually had 
to sing. What I loved about the long process 
of making a double album is that this was the 
kind of song we would never have bothered 
with if not for the necessity of seeking out 
new beginning and endings. I like to think 
that symbolically our unity on this very last 
song stands as a fitting and final testament to 
a dream which held us in very good stead for 
many years. A wonderful dream that lasted 
long enough for us to even bother to docu- 
ment its raucous trajectory. 

— Billy Corgan, August 2012 




Morning Tea 

* * *- 

Tonight, Tonight 
(Strings Alone Mix) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Chicago Recording Company, 
Chicago IL Spring 1995 
Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 



Methusela (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Fall 1994 

Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 

X.Y.U. (Take 11) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Chicago Recording Company, 
Chicago IL Spring 1995 
Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 

Zero (Synth Mix) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Chicago Recording Company, 
Chicago IL Spring 1995 
Mixed by Flood 

Previously unreleased 

Feelium (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Fall 1994 

Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 



Autumn Nocturne (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Fall 1994 

Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 

Beautiful (Loop Version) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Chicago Recording Company, 
Chicago IL Spring 1995 
Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 

Ugly (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Winter 1994 

Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 

Ascending Guitars (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Winter 1994 

Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 



By Starlight (Flood Rough) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Pumpkinland, Chicago IL 
Spring 1995 
Mixed by Flood 

Previously unreleased 

Medellia Of The Gray Skies (Take 1) 

Produced by Billy Corgan / Jeff Moleski 
Recorded at Soundworks, Chicago IL Fall 1995 
Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 

Lover (Arrangement 1 Demo) 

Produced by Flood / James Iha 
Recorded at Chicago Recording Company, 
Chicago IL Spring 1995 
Mixed by Flood 

Previously unreleased 

Thru The Eyes Of Ruby (Take 7) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Chicago Recording Company, 
Chicago IL Spring 1995 
Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 



In The Arms Of Sleep 
(Early Live Demo) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Chicago Recording Company, 
Chicago IL Spring 1995 
Mixed by Flood 

Previously unreleased 

Lily (My One And Only) 
(Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Winter 1994 

Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 

1979 (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 
Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL 
Summer 1995 
Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 

Glamey Glamey (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Winter 1994 

Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 



Meladori Magpie 

Produced by Billy Corgan 
Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Fall 1994 
Originally released on the Thirty-Three 
CD single, 1996 

Mellon Collie And The Infinite 
Sadness (Home Piano Version) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Home, Chicago IL Winter 1994 

Previously unreleased 

Galapogos 

(Instrumental/ Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Winter 1995 

Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 

To Forgive (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Fall 1994 

Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 



High Tea 

Bullet With Butterfly Wings 
(Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Winter 1995 

Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 

Set The Ray To Jerry 
(Vocal Rough) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Chicago Recording Company, 
Chicago IL Spring 1995 
Mixed by Flood 

Previously unreleased 

Thirty-Three (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Winter 1995 

Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 




Cupid De Locke (BT 2012 Mix) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Pumpkinland, Chicago IL 
Spring 1995 

Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 



3 



Porcelina Of The Vast Oceans 
(Live Studio Rough) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Pumpkinland, Chicago IL 
Spring 1995 
Mixed by Flood 

Previously unreleased 

Jellybelly 

(Instrumental/Pit Mix 3) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Chicago Recording Company, 
Chicago IL Spring 1995 
Mixed by Flood 

Previously unreleased 

The Aeroplane Flies High 
(Turns Left, Looks Right) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Charing Cross Studios in Sydney 

and Soundworks in Chicago 

Engineered by Martin White and Jeff Moleski 

Assisted by George Langis 

Originally released on the Thirty-Three 

CD single, 1996 



Jupiter s Lament (Barbershop Version) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Pumpkinland, Chicago IL 
Spring 1995 

Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 

Bagpipes Drone (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Winter 1995 

Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 

Tonight, Tonight 

(Band Version Only, No Strings) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Pumpkinland, Chicago IL 
Spring 1995 

Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 

Knuckles (Studio Outtake) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Pumpkinland, Chicago IL 
Spring 1995 

Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 



Pennies 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands and Soundworks, 

Chicago IL Fall 1995 

Engineered by Billy Corgan and "The Mole" 
Originally released on the Zero CD single, 1996 

Here Is No Why 
(Pumpkinland Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Pumpkinland, Chicago IL 

Fall 1994 

Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 

Blast (Fuzz Version) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Winter 1995 

Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 

Towers Of Rabble (Live) 

Recorded Live at The Double Door, 
Chicago IL February 28, 1995 
Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 

Rotten Apples 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Fall 1994 



Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 

Original version released on the Tonight, 

Tonight CD single, 1995 

Fun Time (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Fall 1994 

Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 

Thru The Eyes Of Ruby 
(Acoustic Version) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Chicago Recording Company, 

Chicago IL Spring 1995 

Mixed by Billy Corgan 

Previously unreleased 

Chinoise (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Fall 1994 

Previously unreleased 

Speed 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Pumpkinland, Chicago IL 
Spring 1995 

Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud / Billy Corgan 

Previously unreleased 




Special Tea 



Mellon Collie And The Infinite 
Sadness (Nighttime Version 1) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Chicago Recording Company, 
Chicago IL Spring 1995 
Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 

Galapogos (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Fall 1994 

Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 

Cherry (BT 2012 Mix) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Pumpkinland, Chicago IL 
Spring 1995 

Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 
Previously unreleased 
Original version released on the 
1979 CD single, 1996 



Love (Flood Rough) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Pumpkinland, Chicago IL 
Spring 1995 
Mixed by Flood 

Previously unreleased 

New Waver (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Fall 1994 

Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 

Fuck You/ An Ode To No One 
(Production Master Rough) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Pumpkinland, Chicago IL 
Fall 1994 
Mixed by Flood 

Previously unreleased 

Isolation (BT 2012 Mix) 

Produced by Flood and Billy Corgan 
Recorded at Chicago Recording Company, 
Chicago IL Summer 1995 
Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 




Original version released on A Means To An 
End - The Music Of Joy Division, 
Virgin Records, 1995 

Transformer (Early Mix) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Charing Cross Studios, Sydney 

and Soundworks Recording Studios, Chicago 

Engineered by Martin White and Jeff Moleski 

Assisted by George Langis 

Mixed by Billy Corgan 

Previously unreleased 

Originally released on the Thirty-Three 

CD single, 1996 

Dizzle (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Fall 1994 

Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 

Goodnight (Basic Vocal Rough) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Pumpkinland, Chicago IL 
Spring 1995 
Mixed by Flood 

Previously unreleased 



Eye (Soundworks Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Soundworks, Chicago IL 

Winter 1997 

Mixed by Billy Corgan 

Previously unreleased 

Blank (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Fall 1994 

Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 

Original version released on the Thirty-Three 
CD single, 1996 

Beautiful (Instrumental-Middle 8) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Fall 1994 

Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 

My Blue Heaven (BT 2012 Mix) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 
Recorded at Soundworks Recording 
Studios, Chicago 
Engineered by Jeff Moleski 
Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 
Previously unreleased 

Original version released on the Thirty-Three 
CD single, 1996 





One And Two 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Pumpkinland, Chicago IL 
Fall 1994 

Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 

Zoom (7 ips) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Pumpkinland, Chicago IL 
Fall 1994 

Mixed by Billy Corgan 

Previously unreleased 



Pastichio Medley (Reversed Extras) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Previously unreleased 

Marquis In Spades (BT 2012 Mix) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Pumpkinland and Soundworks, 

Chicago IL Summer 1995 

Engineered by "The Mole" 

Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 

Original version released on the Zero 

CD single, 1996 

Tales Of A Scorched Earth 
(Instrumental/Pit Mix 3) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Chicago Recording Company, 
Chicago IL Spring 1995 
Mixed by Flood 

Previously unreleased 

Tonite Reprise (Version 1) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Chicago Recording Company, 
Chicago IL Spring 1995 
Mixed by Bjorn Thorsrud 

Previously unreleased 




Wishing You Were Real 
(Home Demo) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Home, Chicago IL Spring 1995 

Previously unreleased 

Thru The Eyes Of Ruby 
(Pit Mix 3) 

Produced by Flood / Alan Moulder / 
Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Chicago Recording Company, 
Chicago IL Spring 1995 
Mixed by Flood 

Previously unreleased 

Phang (Sadlands Demo) 

Produced by Billy Corgan 

Recorded at Sadlands, Chicago IL Fall 1994 

Mixed by Howard Willing 

Previously unreleased 



Original Credits 

% * * 

the smashing pumpkins • billy corgan • james 
iha • d'arcy • jimmy chamberlin 

produced by flood, alan moulder, and billy 
corgan • recorded march-august 1995 at 
pumpkinland, sadlands, bugg studios, chicago 
recording company, and the village recorder by 
alan moulder, flood, chris shepard, james iha, 
and billy corgan • assisted by claudine pontier 

• additional production on "take me down" and 
"farewell and goodnight" by james iha • string 
recording assistance by dave kresl • additional 
vocals recorded by barry goldberg • mixed at the 
village recorder by alan moulder, flood, and billy 
corgan except "take me down" and "farewell 
and goodnight" by flood, alan moulder, and 
james iha • assisted by barry "sounds like gold" 
goldberg • technical assistance by jeff moleski, 
russ spice, gooch, adam green (digidesign), 
roger carpenter, and guitar dave mannet • 
strings on "tonight, tonight" arranged by 

billy corgan and audrey riley • pedal and lap 
steel guitar on "take me down" by greg leisz 

• "Explosion from DOOM courtesy of id 
Software, Inc and bobby prince Music" • art 
direction and design: frank olinsky and billy 
corgan • illustration: john craig • photography: 
andrea giacobbe • a&r mark williams 



Reissue Credits 



reissue produced by billy corgan 
project management: bjorn thorsrud, 
michael murphy 

tracks 1-28 mastered by bob ludwig at 
gateway mastering, portland maine, july 2012 
tracks 29-92 mastered by howie Weinberg, 
august, 2012 

a&r supervision: matt d'amico 

art direction/design: noel waggener 

design: chad tomlinson 

design thanks: charisse kelly, jenifer biniek &c 
mary ann estes, louisiana research collection, 
tulane university 
photographs: kevin cummins 
illustration: © john craig 
art supervision: susan lavoie 
product manager: kris perera 
legal oversight: jill berliner 



all songs written by billy corgan and 
published by cinderful music, bmi except: 

"take me down," "goodnight," "one and two" 
written by james iha, published by cellophane 
star music, bmi 

"farewell and goodnight" and "lover" written 
by james iha and billy corgan, published by 
cellophane star/cinderful music, bmi 

"isolation" written by ian curtis, peter hook, 
Stephen morris, benard sumner, published 
by donaldson publishing co. /george whiting 
publishing co. 

"pastichio medley" by billy corgan, jimmy 
chamberlin, james iha, d'arcy wretzky, 
published by cinderful music/cellophane star 
music/chrysalis songs, bmi 

Compilation ® 2012 Virgin Records America, 
Inc © 2012 Virgin Records America, Inc. 
Unauthorized reproduction is a violation of 
applicable laws. 5099997854159 






I